Wake Tech Community College’s Central Energy Plant Named GBI’s 2023 Green Globes Project of the Year

GBI recognizes WTCC’s Central Energy Plant, six others for annual Green Globes Project of the Year Awards

Portland, Ore., April 25, 2024 –The Green Building Initiative (GBI) celebrates Earth Week with the

announcement of Wake Technical Community College’s Central Energy Plant as the 2023 Green Globes Project of the Year. The April 25 virtual awards ceremony also recognizes a Runner-Up, Honorable Mention, and winners of GBI’s four new specialty awards. The Central Energy Plant building houses mechanical equipment for the geothermal field and earned a Four Green Globes rating under Green Globes for New Construction (NC) in April 2023.

“GBI’s Green Globes Project of the Year Award recognizes excellence in sustainable, healthy, and resilient design and construction or operation,” says Vicki Worden, GBI President & CEO. “The Central Energy Plant at Wake Tech Community College truly demonstrates leadership for its use of alternative energy sources, incorporation of educational opportunities, and commitment to improving quality of life for those in Wake County.”

The Central Energy Plant project was designed and built as part of a new greenfield community college campus, Wake Tech Community College selected the Eastern Wake Campus site to provide a new generation of resources to an underserved and rapidly developing part of Wake County. The building is the thermal energy hub for campus buildings through a complex ground source heat pump, or hybrid geothermal system. Featuring 297 wells dug to a depth of 500 feet and 297,000 feet of vertical piping, this innovative system is expected to use one-third less energy and emit 50 percent less carbon than traditional boiler or chiller setups. The roof features 283 high-efficiency solar panels capable of producing 160,956 kilowatt hours per year – enough to power 15 homes annually.

Designed and constructed by HH Architecture and Skanska USA Building for Wake Technical Community College, the building showcases mechanical systems with easily accessible and daylit spaces. The administrative portion includes a medium-density fiber room, classroom, and classroom annex for students learning about building systems, which are color-coded and highlighted with an electronic dashboard. The Central Energy Plant is the first project in North Carolina to Achieve Four Green Globes.

“Wake Tech is known for providing education and training in the latest sustainability technologies and protocols, but our commitment goes further,” says Jeff Carter, VP of Facilities at Wake Tech. “The college offers a model of environmentally responsible growth as it continues to expand its reach in the region, with sustainable construction and energy-saving best practices and operations college-wide. We are proud to receive this recognition.”

Recognized as the Green Globes Project of the Year Runner-Up, The Row Fulton Market in Chicago, IL, is a 43-story residential building located at 164 N Peoria in Chicago’s historic Fulton-Randolph Market District. The Row achieved Three Green Globes for New Construction, reflecting a holistic approach that Related Midwest brings to all its projects, encouraging energy efficiency, water conservation, and the use of sustainable materials. Amenity spaces throughout the building offer areas for relaxation and social interaction that contribute to residents’ physical health and mental and emotional well-being.

The Colorado Mesa University Foster Field House received GBI’s Green Globes Project of the Year Honorable Mention, earning Three Green Globes under Green Globes for New Construction for the sustainable transformation of the sports, academic instructional, and physical education facility. The project team is credited with reducing operational carbon emissions by using the existing onsite geo-exchange system – one of the largest systems in North America – for heating and cooling.

GBI’s 2023 Green Globes Project of the Year Awards ceremony featured the first annual specialty award recipients including:

  • Leadership in Core & Shell Award: Fisher Industrial Park (Fairfield, OH)
  • Carbon Reduction Award:  Oak Brook Commons Medical Office Building (Oak Brook, IL)
  • Adaptive Reuse & Revitalization Award: Dr. Vince Clinical Research Facility (Overland Park, KS)
  • Energy Excellence Award:  Annex of Bozeman (Bozeman, MT)

GBI congratulates Wake Tech Community College’s Central Energy Plant, The Row Fulton Market, the Colorado Mesa University Foster Field House, Fisher Industrial Park, Oak Brook Commons Medical Office Building, Dr. Vince Clinical Research Facility, and Annex of Bozeman on their sustainability achievements and applauds all Green Globes-certified buildings for their contributions to improving the built environment to reduce climate impacts. Learn more about GBI’s Annual Green Globes Project of the Year awards.


About GBI

GBI is an international nonprofit organization and American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Accredited Standards Developer dedicated to improving the built environment’s impact on climate and society. Founded in 2004, the organization is the global provider of Green Globes®, Green Globes Journey to Net Zero™, and federal Guiding Principles Compliance building assessment and certification programs. GBI also issues professional credentials, including Green Globes Professional (GGP), Green Globes Emerging Professional (GGEP) and Guiding Principles Compliance Professional (GPCP). To learn more about opportunities to become involved with GBI, contact info@thegbi.org or visit the GBI website at www.thegbi.org

Media Contact

Megan Baker

GBI Vice President of Engagement

(971) 256-7174